7-Year-Old Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Suffers Allergies
Constant Ear Infections, Itchy Face, Itchy Paws, Chewing at Skin, and Black Skin on Belly
Amelia visited Doc Truli for a dogicure (that’s a pedicure for dogs!) Doc could not help but notice a few uncomfortable-looking problems with Amelia’s skin and ears.
The poor little Spaniel suffered constant itchiness in her face, paws and ears. Her armpits and groin sported black pigment infiltrating the areas. Her right ear looked like a yeast infection had dug a home in the lining of the ear canal and did not want to leave anytime soon!
Signs of Allergies in Dogs
- Itchy Face
- Itchy Paws, Licking Paws
- Black Skin in the armpits and groin area (axillary and inguinal, respectively)
- “Dry eye”
- Recurrent, difficult ear infections that just won’t go away
The “Ears” Have It
Amelia’s right ear showed the classic appearance of a long-time, chronic allergic ear with secondary infection. The flap was thick and bright pink. The cartilage scaffolding inside the ear flap and canal felt thick and hard, almost as firm as bone. The skin showed a corrugated, cobble-stone appearance. The thick, irregular, swollen ear canal opening was 75% reduced format he normal diameter. Only 25% of the opening remained to let light and fresh air and ear cleaners into the canal.
Black Color on a Dog’s Belly
Amelia’s belly skin revealed a classic sign of chronically irritated dog skin: hyperpigmentation.
When allergies and irritation aggravate the skin, first there’s a redness and itchiness. The classic pink and red appearance of skin after scratching or a rash illustrates the point. But, after a long time, the delicate thin skin in the groin and armpit region of a dog will start to pick up melanin pigment from melanocytes living scattered throughout the epidermal outer skin layers.
Many people think the black pigment is dirt and try to wash the color off. But the black color on the dog’s skin will not wash off! You must seek out and eliminate the source of the allergic reaction. Sometimes medication, herbs, vitamin supplements or special shampoos can calm the hypersensitive immune system.
Once you have your dog’s allergies under control, the pigment can slowly go away and the normal pink color will return to the area.
What Should You Do If Your Dog has Hyperpigmentation, Irritated Ears, or Itchy Face, Paws and Ears?
Call your family veterinarian for a consultation.
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